Herbal Teas not only taste good but also when the right combinations are chosen can help to relieve stress emotionally and physically. Long before modern medicine, people used a variety of herbs and spices to stimulate, relax and heal the body. Many of these combinations are the bases of the drugs we use today. As more research has been done in the healing properties of these plants, they are once more being introduced as a method of healing. You do need to be aware of any sensitivity you may have, as there are a few which people with allergies should not use. However, most are safe.
For over 4,000 years tea has been valued both as a medicine and a drink for pleasure. It has been known as the plant of Heaven. Chinese poet Lotung once wrote, “When I drink tea, I am conscious of peace. The cool breath of Heaven rises in my sleeves, and blows my cares away.” Traditional black oolong tea has the most pungent flavour and is from the fully fermented leaves of the oolong bush. Although it has many healing properties it does contain caffeine so if this is your choice it is best to choose one that is naturally decaffeinated. Oolong tea is made from the slightly fermented leaves while green tea, which is actually the fresh leaves of the oolong bush, has the lowest amount of caffeine and can be purchased decaffeinated. Of the three, the green tea has been proven to provide the most health benefits and can be found as an ingredient in many herbal combinations not only as a tea but in pill form as well.
Green is the strongest medicinally as fermentation decreases the medicinal nature of the tea. The powerful antioxidants found in green tea are reported to be two hundred times stronger than vitamin E. Just some of its healing properties are:
- anticancer – protect cells from free radical damage, help to keep radioactive strontium 90 out of the bones
- antibacterial, antiviral helping to fight colds and flu and viruses
- lowers cholesterol, helps to metabolize fats –green tea is oftena supplement in herbal diet programs
- regulates blood sugar
- stimulates the heart, preventative against heart disease
- high in fluoride
- assists in breathing
- weight management
Here as just a few of the herbal teas you may wish to try on their own or in a combination. Don’t be afraid to experiment by blending your own tea. If you enjoy gardening (which is a good stress release as well) try planting your own herbs. The satisfaction of being able to gather fresh herbs and brew tea with plants from your own garden is very calming all on its own. Many herbs dry well and can be stored and used all year long.
- Licorice – tonic for the adrenal glands, which produce the “fight or flight” hormones for coping with stress, stomach problems (do not use if you have hypertension)
- Rooibos –relieves hypertension
- Chamomile – calming, eases muscle pain, helps in sleep ( some are allergic to chamomile)
- Lemon Verbena – fragrant sedative
- Peppermint – calms you all over, used for the hysteria dn nervous disorders
- Lemon Balm – antidepressant, tonic for the nervous system, relieves tension and aids respiratory healing
Dust off the teapot, get out your favourite cup, and prepare yourself a bit of heaven. Hold the cup in your hands, enjoying its warmth, breath in the steam and experience the tea’s aroma. Now, sip slowly and really taste this magical blend of herbs. Don’t be afraid to try new mixes and notice how they make you feel. Guaranteed you will be pleasantly surprised to find some peace in a tea cup.